How to Manage “The Itch” from Topical Steroid Withdrawal
Topical steroids are prescribed medication for a wide range of skin condition. They simulate natural hormones in the body and provide “anti-inflammatory” action, mainly to reduce redness, swelling and irritation. These symptoms are very common to eczema and to keep it at bay, doctors are lead to increase the use of topical steroids and of higher potency. Higher dosage and usage will cause Topical Steroid Addiction and the way to recover from it is to undergo withdrawal.
Just like any other withdrawal treatments, there are symptoms experienced such as: red, burning skin, rashes, swelling, flaking, oozing blisters, enlarged lymph nodes, sleep difficulty and systemic itchiness to name a few. These symptoms fall under what they call the “Red Skin Syndrome (RSS)”.
So how do people deal with “The Itch”? Here are some tips on managing it:
- Maintain Control: Take note of your allergens and irritants, and try to eliminate all possible causes that can trigger the itch. Keep in mind that the more you scratch, the itchiniess is not actually alleviated but rather causes the release of histamine which makes you want to scratch more.
- Practice Mindful Scratching: Have the mindset to avoid scratching a habit. This might be difficult at first especially when the itch is persistent, but building a habit is a gradual process. Have a friend that will constantly remind you on this and to watch out for you whenever you are instinctively scratching more than you should.
- Distract Yourself: Avert your thoughts from the discomfort and itchiness and do something that keeps your hand busy to stop yourself from scratching.
- Apply Temperature: Temperature changes can facilitate comfort. Put an ice pack, rinse in cold water or take a cold bath can lessen the itch on the spot. Others can find warm temperature comforting as well but be careful not to apply it too hot.
- Wear Itch-free Garments: Your daily wear plays a great role in managing itchiness from Topical Steroid Withdrawal, hence why Cottonique was made. Clothing yourself in an all-natural, chemical-free, 100% cotton material will greatly improve RSS symptoms and aid in reducing itchiness. Use materials that are hypoallergenic and both latex- and spandex-free.
These are all helpful tips in managing the symptoms of Topical Steroid Withdrawal, however, always keep in mind to consult your doctor before starting your topical steroid withdrawal and work together on your journey of being itch-free!